Table of Contents
- Descriptive Summary
- Access Information
- Use Information
- Acquisition Information
- Processing Information
- Preferred Form of Citation
- Biographical Note
- Scope and Content Note
- Arrangement of the Papers
- Subject Terms
- Detailed Description of the Collection
- Selzer, Louis, 1873-1955
- Selzer, Elizabeth, 1880-1971
- Louis and Elizabeth Selzer Papers
- Inclusive Dates
- circa 1890-1963
- MC 2365
- 1 linear foot (2 boxes)
- Materials are in English.
- Special Collections Department, University of Arkansas Libraries
Please call (479) 575-8444 or email firstname.lastname@example.org at least two weeks in advance of your arrival to ensure availability of the materials.
No Use Restrictions Apply.
No Interlibrary Loan.
Standard Federal Copyright Laws Apply (U.S. Title 17).
The Louis and Elizabeth Selzer Papers were donated to the Special Collections Department by David Lee Campbell of Folsom, Louisiana, on February 15, 2019. The papers were originally found on Campbell's family's farm in Monticello, Arkansas.
Processed by Katrina Windon; completed in June 2019.
Preferred Form of Citation
Louis and Elizabeth Selzer Papers (MC 2365), Special Collections, University of Arkansas Libraries, Fayetteville.
See Special Collections Citation Guide for more detailed information on how to cite specific documents from the collection.
Louis William Selzer was born November 27, 1873, in Chicago, Illinois to Fannie Bell Mills and Frank Selzer. Elizabeth (Lizzie) Brun was born August 9, 1880, in Morris, Oklahoma. The couple married circa 1903. They had a long career with traveling circuses and carnivals; Louis Selzer performed as a high wire artist, and the couple jointly operated a shooting gallery and trained monkeys. The Selzers eventually settled in Monticello, Arkansas. Louis Selzer passed away September 20, 1955, and Elizabeth Selzer passed away in February 1971.
Scope and Content Note
The collection consists of the personal papers, primarily photographs and correspondence, of Louis and Elizabeth (Lizzie) Selzer, a couple involved with traveling circuses and carnivals in the American South and Midwest.
Other materials include financial records and ephemera. Photographs are primarily of people, many of whom are not identified; other photographs document circus and carnival performers and scenes, including the Selzers' shooting gallery and trained monkeys.
Arrangement of the Papers
Materials are arranged by format. Photographs are further arranged by subject; when identifiable, photographs of the same event or individuals have been grouped together.
The following persons, organizations, or topics are among those represented within the collection materials:
Detailed Description of the Collection
The following contains a detailed list of the materials in the collection
|Box 1||Folder 1||
Elizabeth Selzer correspondence, incoming, 1910-1963
Includes a photographic postcard with carnival or circus scene on recto, from Ethel Lorenzo; other correspondents include Selzer's niece, Anna, and her father, William Brun.
|Box 1||Folder 2||
Elizabeth Selzer correspondence, incoming, 1928-1959
Two letters include enclosed photographs: a 1955 sympathy card from Mr. and Mrs. DeWitt Hueline includes three photographs of a woman and a gravesite, possibly Louis Selzer's; a 1928 leter from Grace and Harry Dickinson includes a tintype portrait of a couple
|Box 1||Folder 3||
Elizabeth Selzer correspondence, outgoing, 1932, 1957, undated
One letter, addressed to Norm Thompson, includes a 1950 photograph of a couple and their dog
|Box 1||Folder 4||
Elizabeth Selzer correspondence, empty envelopes, 1950-1963
|Box 1||Folder 5||
Travel itinerary, 1903
List of travels between October-December 1903, primarily throughout the U.S. South; one entry notes "Lizzie was married in Augusta 11/4/03"
|Box 1||Folder 6||
Elizabeth Breene and Louis and Elizabeth Selzer life insurance receipt books, correspondence, and notes, circa 1928-1955
|Box 1||Folder 7||
Louis and Elizabeth Selzer correspondence, incoming, 1912-1955
Letters and cards addressed jointly to Louis and Elizabeth Selzer
|Box 1||Folder 8||
Louis Selzer correspondence, incoming, circa 1912-1953
Includes a postcard from Elizabeth to Louis Selzer, and a letter from Ross Engle on Bellmar Bros. Circus stationery
|Box 1||Folder 9||
Louis and Elizabeth Selzer income tax returns, 1943
|Box 1||Folder 10||
Louis Selzer Elk Lodge membership card (Americus, Georgia, Lodge No. 752), 1950
|Box 1||Folder 11||
Louis Selzer Billboard Bondbarment certificate from U.S. Treasury War Finance Committee, 1943
|Box 1||Folder 12||
Correspondence regarding Louis Selzer property in Michigan, 1957
|Box 1||Folder 13||
Correspondence fragments, undated
|Box 1||Folder 14||
Birth and death announcements, 1950-1951, undated
Death announcements for Louis Selzer's brother Frank Selzer and sister Etta Symes; birth announcement for Linda Anne Symes
|Box 1||Folder 15||
Printed materials, 1956, undated
Orval Faubus gubernatorial campaign advertisement, 1956; Lano-Chaney Puppet Theatre advertisement; "Formula for Silver Plating" typescript; William Penn Cabin photographic postcard; "Holy Heart of Christ" illustrated postcard
|Box 1||Folder 16||
Greeting cards, unused, circa 1945-1965
|Box 2||Folder 1||Item 1-12||
Photographs- Carnival or circus performers or employees, circa 1900-1950
Includes group photograph of Wahlstrom's Band, St. Louis Entertainment Co., in front of the Jubilee Minstrels (Item 1); portrait of tattooed man identified as "Mr. Colman, Greater Susley Shows, 1916" (Item 2); photograph of Billy Dick[?] of Lee Bros Circus (Item 12); and photograph of "Slim of the Martin's merry go round" (Item 10).
|Box 2||Folder 2||Item 1-7||
Photographs- Carnival or circus scenes, circa 1900-1940
|Box 2||Folder 3||Item 1-19||
Photographs- Monkeys, circa 1930-1950
|Box 2||Folder 4||Item 1-2||
Photographs- Hoopla game, 1931
On the recto, Item 2 is labeled as "Jun 16/31 Our 20 ft Hoopla. Put-in-Bay, Ohio. Our 7th year in the park here."
|Box 2||Folder 5||Item 1-6||
Photographs- Shooting galleries, circa 1910-1940
On the verso, Item 3 is labeled as "Selzer's Arcade and Shooting Gallery. With St. Louis Amusement Co."
|Box 2||Folder 6||Item 1-7||
Photographs- High wire/tightrope acts, circa 1910-1940
|Box 2||Folder 7||Item 1-3||
Photographs- Buildings, 1910, undated
|Box 2||Folder 8||Item 1-2||
Photographs- Manhattan Athletic Club, circa 1890-1910
|Box 2||Folder 9||Item 1-4||
Photographs- People with station wagon, circa 1920-1950
|Box 2||Folder 10||Item 1-2||
Photographs- Goat and automobile, circa 1910-1940
|Box 2||Folder 11||Item 1-3||
Photographs- George and unidentified women in Arizona desert, circa 1920-1950
|Box 2||Folder 12||Item 1-2||
Photographs- Doris and Betty, 1931-1933
|Box 2||Folder 13||Item 1-9||
Photographs- Symes Family , 1945-1956, undated
Primarily photographs of Linda and Nancy Symes; Harry and Marcia Symes are also pictured
|Box 2||Folder 14||Item 1-7||
Photographs- Mr. and Mrs. Conley and others, circa 1890-1940
|Box 2||Folder 15||Item 1-26||
Photographs- Home and dog of one of Elizabeth Selzer's nieces or nephews, 1956-1958, undated
|Box 2||Folder 16||Item 1-16||
Photographs- Daniel O. Hunt and others, 1927, undated
Includes self-portrait of photographer Daniel O. Hunt of Seminole, Oklahoma, as well as others; several photographs have stamp of Hunt's Seminole Studio on recto. Others identified are Dr. Donnicker and Polly Graves.
|Box 2||Folder 17||Item 1-9||
Photographs- Children, circa 1920-1930
Primarily photographs of a young girl also pictured in group photographs in Folder 16; includes photographs of the girl with monkeys and other animals, and with Daniel O. Hunt's automobile.
|Box 2||Folder 18||Item 1-4||
Photographs- Bud, David, Tommy, and Michael, 1956
|Box 2||Folder 19||Item 1-3||
Photographs- Kathleen and Willowdeen[?] Driskell and others, 1954-1957
|Box 2||Folder 20||Item 1-3||
Photographs- Sylvia, 1951, undated
|Box 2||Folder 21||Item 1-6||
Photographs- People and scenery in the Manistee Valley, 1930, 1956
Those pictured are Frank Selzer (Item 1), Joey (Item 5), and Mary (Item 6).
|Box 2||Folder 22||Item 1-14||
Photographs- People, circa 1910-1955
Those identified are Harry and Marcie (Item 1); Mrs. Bell [or Bill] Martin (Item 2); "Bill, Marci, Nancy, Harry, Roy, Betty, Moe, George, Doris" (Item 3); "Alvera, Billie baby & Grand Ma Mills Mrs. Mills" (Item 4); Mary Riff[?] (Item 5); "Little John Shusley" (Item 6); Margo, Nettie, Bill Sr., and Bill Jr. (Item 9); Jim[?], Jack, and Honey (Item 11); Leo (Item 12); Eleanor and Billy (Item 13); and Jimmie Carty (Item 14).
|Box 2||Folder 23||Item 1-40||
Photographs- People, circa 1890-1955
Photographs are primarily unidentified. Those named are "Two Georges - Wives - + old Cow boy at Ray Arizona" (Item 8); "Bill + Betty," "Roy & Doris, me and Ria[?]" (Item 30)
|Box 2||Folder 24||Item 1-18||
Photographs- People, circa 1920-1955
Photographs are primarily unidentified. Item 12, an image of a woman and man with a vehicle, is identified on recto as "September 1930. Our Home. Akron, N.Y. Our vacation for one week after the park closed Labor Day," and may be of Louis and Elizabeth Selzer. All are prints except for Item 10, which is a negative. Item 18 is of a man and woman on the back of a train with signs "Midnight Choo-Choo" and "Alabama Bound."
|Box 2||Folder 25||Item 1-12||
Photographs- People, circa 1900-1940
END OF COLLECTION